Utah Cannabis License Guidelines

Utah Department of Health

License and Enforcement Criteria

The Utah Medical Cannabis Program (UMCP) is a subsection of the Utah Department of Health and the Utah Department of Agriculture and Food.  The UMCP is responsible for the regulation of the medical cannabis program across Utah.  

A person may not locate a medical cannabis pharmacy within 200 feet of a community location or within 600 feet of a district that the relevant municipality or county has zoned as primarily residential.

If the department receives more than one application for a medical cannabis pharmacy within the same city or town, the department shall consult with the local land use authority before approving any of the applications pertaining to that city or town.

The department may not issue a license to operate a medical cannabis pharmacy to an applicant if an individual has been convicted under state or federal law of:

  • A felony; or
  • After December 3, 2018, a misdemeanor for drug distribution;
  • Is younger than 21 years old; or
  • After September 23, 2019, until January 1, 2023, is actively serving as a legislator.

Utah Cannabis Law and Compliance

Several laws and ordinances regulate the Utah medical cannabis industry, as well as the many different steps in the supply chain. These laws range over dispositions for cultivators, manufacturers, distributors and retail dispensaries. The most recent news can be found on these websites:

FAQs

What forms of medical cannabis are qualifying patients allowed to purchase and use?

Medical cannabis will only be available in the following forms under the Utah Medical Cannabis Act:

  • Tablet
  • Capsule
  • Concentrated oil
  • Liquid suspension
  • Transdermal preparation
  • Gelatinous cube
  • Unprocessed cannabis flower in a tamper-evident and a resistant container that is opaque that contains a quantity that varies no more than 10% from the stated weight at the time of packaging
  • Wax or resin
  • Medical cannabis devices such as a vaping pen that warms cannabis material into a vapor without the use of a flame and that delivers cannabis to an individual’s respiratory system

Smoking cannabis is not permitted.

The law prohibits candies, cookies, brownies, and other edible products.

How much medical cannabis are card holders allowed to possess or purchase at one time?

Qualifying patients may not possess more than an amount sufficient to provide 30 days of treatment based on the dosing guidelines recommended by their recommending medical provider and may not exceed:

  • More than 113 grams of unprocessed cannabis (flower); and
  • More than 20 grams of total composite THC in all other medicinal dosage forms.

Within a 30-day period, qualifying patients may not purchase more than an amount sufficient to provide 30 days of treatment based on the dosing guidelines recommended by their recommending medical provider and may not exceed:

  • More than 113 grams of unprocessed cannabis (flower); and
  • More than 20 grams of total composite THC in all other medicinal dosage forms.

What forms of ID are acceptable for a medical cannabis application?

All participants in the medical cannabis program must submit a valid and current form of government-issued photo ID. Please visit the Utah Department of Public Safety website for more information about obtaining an Identification Card or Driver’s License. Information about obtaining a United States passport or passport card can be found here.

Does the Utah Department of Health release information about medical cannabis patients?

Only in very rare cases does the Utah Department of Health have the authority to release information about whether an individual holds a medical cannabis card without first obtaining written consent from the medical cannabis cardholder.  Here are some examples of the rare cases when the department is authorized to release identifiable information about a cardholder without the department obtaining written consent from the cardholder:

  • Utah Code 26-61a-103 (4) provides that all Utah-licensed physicians, APRNs, Podiatrists, and PAs may access information about a cardholder if the cardholder is a patient the prescribing provider treats.
  • Utah Code 26-61a-103 (2)(g) provides that state and local law enforcement may verify if an individual holds a medical cannabis card during a law enforcement encounter.  If state and local law enforcement wants to verify the medical cannabis card of an individual at a time other than during a law enforcement encounter, they must first obtain a warrant from a court judge for that information.  If state or local law enforcement wants a cardholder’s medical cannabis product purchase history, they must first obtain a warrant from a court judge for that information.
  • Utah Code 26-61a-103 (5) provides that the department may release limited data collected about cardholders for the purpose of conducting medical and other department-approved research. In the future, it is possible that medical researchers from an accredited university may obtain approval from an Institutional Review Board (IRB) to conduct medical research.  In these cases, only limited data about cardholders would be released.

The Utah Department of Health is careful to ensure the protection of cardholder information. In the rare cases when it is legal to release the data, the department requires that the users of the cardholder information comply with strict standards to ensure its protection and to ensure its use is limited to the purpose for which it was released.

What are the qualifying conditions to receive a medical card?

  • HIV or acquired immune deficiency syndrome
  • Alzheimer’s disease
  • Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis
  • Cancer
  • Cachexia
  • Persistent nausea that is not significantly responsive to traditional treatment, except for nausea related to:
  • Pregnancy
  • Cannabis-induced cyclical vomiting syndrome
  • Cannabinoid hyperemesis syndrome
  • Crohn’s disease or ulcerative colitis
  • Epilepsy or debilitating seizures
  • Multiple sclerosis or persistent and debilitating muscle spasms
  • Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) that is being treated and monitored by a licensed health therapist and that:
  • Has been diagnosed by a healthcare provider by the Veterans Administration and documented in the patient’s record; or
  • Has been diagnosed or confirmed by evaluation from a psychiatrist, masters prepared psychologist, a masters prepared licensed clinical social worker, or a psychiatric APRN
  • Autism
  • A terminal illness when the patient’s life expectancy is less than six months
  • A condition resulting in the individual receiving hospice care
  • A rare condition or disease that affects less than 200,000 individuals in the U.S., as defined in federal law, and that is not adequately managed despite treatment attempts using conventional medications (other than opioids or opiates) or physical interventions
  • Pain lasting longer than two weeks that is not adequately managed, in the qualified medical provider’s opinion, despite treatment attempts using conventional medications other than opioids or opiates or physical interventions.

What type of medical cannabis cards are available?

  • Patient Cards: Patients 18 years of age and older.
  • Guardian Cards: Parents or legal guardians of minors who are eligible to consume medical cannabis. These cards are issued in conjunction with provisional patient cards.
  • Provisional Patient Cards: Minors under the age of 18 who meet the eligibility requirements to consume medical cannabis. These are issued in conjunction with guardian cards. All provisional patient cards must have approval from the Compassionate Use Board.
  • Caregiver Cards: Adults 21 years of age and older who care for patient cardholders who are unable to procure or consume medical cannabis on their own. Caregivers must be designated by the patient cardholders they will be assisting.
  • Non-Utah Resident Cards: Patients with a Utah Qualifying Condition that hold a cannabis card from another state may apply for a temporary card while visiting Utah.

What are the fees associated with the medical cannabis cards?

  • Patient Card (initial): $15
  • Patient Card (six-month renewal): $15
  • Guardian Card (initial): $68.25
  • Guardian Card (six-month renewal): $24
  • Caregiver Card (initial): $68.25
  • Caregiver Card (six-month renewal): $14
  • Non-Utah Resident Card (initial & renewal): $15

What are the requirements to become a qualified medical provider who may recommend patients for a medical cannabis card?

The requirements to become a medical provider who may recommend patients for a medical cannabis card include:

  • Be a Utah-licensed medical doctor (MD), osteopathic physician (DO), advanced practice registered nurse (ARPN), doctor of podiatric medicine (DPM), or physician assistant (PA) with a Utah controlled substance license;
  • Complete at least 4 hours of department-approved education on medical cannabis;
  • Submit an application to the Utah Department of Health (UDOH); and
  • Pay a $100 application fee to the UDOH.

Utah Cannabis License and Business Types

Cultivation

The Utah Department of Agriculture and Food and the Utah Division of Purchasing have selected eight companies to be Medical Cannabis Cultivators in Utah’s Medical Cannabis Program.  

  • Box Elder County –
    • Riverside Farms
    • Standard Wellness Utah
    • True North of Utah
    • Wholesome Ag
  • Sanpete County –
    • Dragonfly Greenhouse
  • Tooele County –
    • Tryke Companies
  • Utah County –
    • Zion Cultivars (Location #1)
  • Weber County –
    • Beehive Gardens/Harvest of Utah
    • Zion Cultivars (Location #2)

The Utah Department of Agriculture is limited on what information can be disclosed about these cultivation facilities.  Many of the companies have public websites and social media accounts with contact information and bios about the companies. 

At this time no more Cannabis Cultivation licenses are being offered. The Utah Department of Agriculture will follow 4-41a-205 and will not exceed 8 Cannabis Cultivation Facility Licenses unless all Cultivators reach their 100,000 sq. ft. grow limit, the Utah Department of Health anticipates a greater patient need, or a current company forfeits their license.

To learn more about Utah’s Cannabis Cultivation Industry please press: Utah’s Cannabis Cultivation Rule R68-27.

Medical Cannabis Processing

The Utah Department of Agriculture and Food’s Medical Cannabis Program has two tiers of cannabis processing licenses governed under Rule R68-28.   

A Tier 1 Processing License allows a facility to process, formulate, package, and label products.  A Tier 2 Processing License allows a facility to package and label products. 

There are currently eleven Tier 1 Processors, two Tier 2 processors, and four Tier 1 processors with an “intent to license”. Applicants with an intent to license have been approved by the Cannabis Production Establishment Licensing Advisory Board pending final inspections and compliance with local regulations. The current Medical Cannabis Processors are listed by County:

  • Box Elder County
    • Riverside Farm
    • Standard Wellness Utah
    • True North Organics
  • Davis County
    • Curaleaf
  • Salt Lake County
    • Dragonfly Processing 
    • Wasatch Extraction
    • Zion Alchemy
  • Sanpete County
    • Dragonfly Processing
  • Tooele County
    • Tryke Companies
  • Utah County
    • Life Elevated
  • Wasatch County
    • Boojum Med
  • Currently Utah does not restrict the number of processing licenses. 
  • To apply please review the Medical Cannabis Processing Application Checklist and follow all instructions.  Before a facility can be issued a license the company must go before the Cannabis Production Establishment Licensing Advisory Board. Dates of the 2022 board meetings and documentation deadlines can be found below. All documents must be completed and submitted by the deadline to be considered by the board. 

To learn more about Utah’s Cannabis Processing Industry please read: Utah’s Cannabis Processing Rule R68-28.

Laboratory and Testing

The Utah Department of Agriculture and Food has one licensed Independent Cannabis Testing Facility located in Utah County.  

The Utah Department of Agriculture and Food is now accepting applications for Independent Testing Laboratories.

The Independent Cannabis Testing Laboratory Rule outlines the qualification for receiving an Independent Laboratory License.   All Labs must comply with Good Laboratory Practice and Compliance Monitoring outlined by the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development.

To apply to be an Independent Cannabis Testing Laboratory in the State of Utah, follow the Checklist in the Lab Application Checklist. Before a facility can be issued a license the company must go before the Cannabis Establishment Review Board.  

All Owners’ submitting an  Independent Cannabis Testing Laboratory application must submit a Background Check and a Performance Bond.

Transportation

Only the following individuals may transport medical cannabis in Utah:

  • A registered medical cannabis pharmacy agent; 
  • A registered medical cannabis courier agent; 
  • A registered pharmacy medical provider; or 
  • A medical cannabis cardholder who is transporting a medical cannabis treatment that the cardholder is authorized to transport.

A medical cannabis pharmacy agent is any employee of a licensed medical cannabis pharmacy (with the exception of pharmacists and physicians).

Prior to beginning work, medical cannabis pharmacy agents must be registered by the Utah Department of Health through the Electronic Verification System (EVS).

Pharmacies

The UDOH began accepting applications to operate medical cannabis pharmacies March 2020. Currently there are 14 locations open across Utah with no new licenses pending as of now.  To learn more about Utah’s pharmacy laws please follow the link here.

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